I was recently in the office of Dr. Tom Hughes because a gold crown on a lower molar came off while I was eating. He informed me that I had worn a hole in the chewing surface and the margins were showing early signs of decay. It simply had “outlived its usefulness.” When he told me the cost of replacement, I initially had “sticker shock.”
Dr. Hughes has been in practice for more than 30 years and has a sense of humor. He placed a plastic bag full of old retired dentures and partial dentures in my lap and said, “It’s a lot better than the alternative.” I immediately had a new perspective and suddenly felt privileged to be in his office and in an era of advanced dental care. After a few moments of reflection, I remembered that the crown was placed more than 30 years ago (I distinctly remember, because I was teaching high school in Oklahoma when I fractured the tooth and had the gold crown placed).
It was difficult for me to complain about the longevity of service because I couldn’t think of anything or any service that I had purchased more than 30 years ago, used every day and still had in my life. I subsequently made an appointment to have the crown replaced. I was pleasantly surprised and impressed with the organization and efficiency of his office and staff. The anesthetic was delivered without discomfort; the procedure was effortless and complete in 30 minutes.
Two weeks later, I returned for the cementation of my new “tooth-colored” crown. It fits, it’s comfortable and ready for decades of service. Thanks to advanced dental care, I will never lose my teeth or my smile. I’m convinced that modern dentistry is not expensive; it’s a bargain!